Alector Teams Up with Johnson & Johnson Innovation to Explore Novel Alzheimer's Target

SAN FRANCISCO, March 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Alector, LLC announced today a collaborative research agreement facilitated by the Johnson & Johnson Innovation Center in California. Under the agreement, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. will fund research in one of Alector's targets through proof-of-concept disease models and will retain a time-limited option to negotiate a commercial agreement.

Arnon Rosenthal, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Alector, said, "As part of our strategy to engage large pharma partners early in the discovery process, we are delighted to collaborate with Johnson & Johnson Innovation on this program. It exemplifies how large pharma companies can access early stage exploratory, high risk high reward programs."

Alector is targeting key components of the pathological pathways that underlie Alzheimer's disease using state-of-the-art monoclonal antibody technology, in strategic alliance with Adimab, the industry's premier yeast display antibody company.

"This agreement provides Alector with a lot of options while helping to reduce our burn rate; a win-win for both parties," added Tillman Gerngross, Ph.D., Chairman of the Board of Alector.

Alector is located at Janssen Labs @QB3 in San Francisco. Through a collaboration with QB3, Janssen Labs @QB3 aims to provide a capital efficient, flexible model for external companies pursuing important healthcare innovations.  It features a no-strings attached approach which is a key component of the flagship Janssen Labs in San Diego. 

About Alzheimer's Disease
Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia, affecting over 5 million people in the US alone. It is characterized by gradual mental deterioration, loss of memory, and eventually death (it is the 6th-leading cause of death in the US). Alzheimer's is a high-profile disease with diagnosis incidence rates expected to rise rapidly due to demographic trends – 11 percent of those over 65 have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. There are currently no methods to prevent, cure or meaningfully slow its progression.

About Alector
Alector, LLC is an early-stage biotech company dedicated to the discovery and development of novel therapeutics for Alzheimer's disease, other forms of dementia. The founding team includes industry veterans Rinat Neuroscience Co-Founder President and CSO Arnon Rosenthal, Ph.D., Dartmouth College Professor Tillman Gerngross, Ph.D., Columbia University Associate Professor Asa Abeliovich, Ph.D., and Adimab COO Errik Anderson. Alector's strategy is to efficiently generate and validate antibody drugs with unique functional properties that engage key disease-altering targets. This approach is enabled by a strategic alliance with Adimab, the industry leader in discovery and optimization of antibody therapeutics. For more information, contact [email protected]